As chiefs fans we think to ourselves often how did we get this bad? Some contribute it to former coach Herman Edwards blowing up the roster in his youth movement, or Carl Peterson not knowing how to evaluate talent and having horrible drafts or the current regime just spinning their wheels as if they don't know what they are doing. The good news is: everybody is right and everybody is wrong
Way back in 2001 when Dick Vermeil was hired, the Chiefs traded their first round draft pick to St. Louis to pick up Trent Green and began our high-flying, score-in-bunches offense. After the first year, everything was great, the Chiefs were winning, scoring forever and even made it to a playoff game where. The offensive line was consistently among the best in the league, and no matter what running back was in the game by years end that back was going to have over 1,000 yards. The problem was that during that time no one bothered to ask, "what happens when all of these great players retire or get injured, what happens then?"
That's the situation we are in now. The offensive line is still reeling some three years after Big Willie Roaf and Will Shields retire, Trent Green gets knocked into retirement, Priest Holmes received neck injuries that drove him into retirement, and Larry Johnson talked himself right out of Kansas City. Since then, the running game has been atrocious (save Jamal Charles), and the passing game is becoming successful: at throwing to the people in the other color jerseys. This situation could have been completely avoided seven years ago.
Once the team was set back in 2002, with the exception of defence to which a sign was posted outside of One Arrowhead drive that said "Sorry, Defense Not Allowed" Carl Peterson should have drafted in the mid to lower rounds to help fortify the offensive line and wide receiver corps. Now if someone gets injured or retires we have some young stallions that know the system, have studied behind the best in the league and can step right in..
Next, Peterson shouldn't have drafted Larry Johnson. Not that Larry wasn't a beast he just wasn't the need for the team at the time as we had Priest Holmes and a capable backup in Derrick Blaylock. Vermeil was right to want to draft a defensive player but albiet Mr. Johnson became a Chief. Now Dick Vermeil retires and in comes Herm Edwards. After one year with Vermeil's team making it to the playoffs, Edwards blows up the roster and begins the youth movement. Problem with that is that the veterans we had should not have just been jettisoned; they should have been retained to show the young players how to prepare.
Most Chiefs fans know that Peterson was more of a businessman rather than a football guy. Ticket prices constantly on the rise for 20 years and some not very good draft picks doomed the Chiefs for years. The problem with his business ethics is that Peterson did business with emotions rather than with good business sense. Had Peterson traded Larry Johnson to Green Bay after setting an NFL record 416 rushing attempts, the Chiefs could have catalysed the youth movement and fortified an offensive line that was crumbling a lot faster. Along with the Jared Allen trade the Chiefs could have obtained 2 additional first round picks, three third round picks and a swapped sixth rounder
Haley and Herm talked about the 53 players that gave us the best chance to win. Simply put, this was a long time coming and we can only hope that Pioli can draft us out of it and Haley can coach us back into the Chiefs winning ways.